At Prime Minister’s Question Time today, Ming Campbell MP questioned the Prime Minister over his Government’s position on US President George W. Bush’s policy of rendition and secret detention.
Ming Campbell asked:
Can he confirm that the United Kingdom has given no logistical support for rendition to the CIA, nor provided any information to be used in torture?
Mr Blair replied:
We have said absolutely all we have to say on this. There is nothing more to add to it. I have to say the Council of Europe report adds absolutely nothing new whatever to the information we have.
Ming Campbell continued:
I think the Prime Minister might find careful reading of the Council of Europe report particularly rewarding, because the Council of Europe report says that rendition involves disappearances. It involves secret detention. It involves unlawful transfers to countries that practice torture.
On 7th December the Prime Minister told the House that he fully endorsed rendition. Does he still do so now?
In response, Mr Blair said:
I think what I actually said was that rendition had been the policy of the American Government for a long period of time, including under the last administration as well as this administration. We have kept Parliament informed of all the requests we are aware of, four in 1998; two of which were granted, two declined. As for the rest of the Council of Europe report, it concerns other countries, and obviously I’m not in a position to speak about them.